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Thursday, January 04, 2018

Mailvox: roles are not interchangeable

Szopen shares an important observation from recent Polish history:
One acute political commenter made once a remark, that great guerilla leaders do not necesarily make great generals in regular war, nor great political leaders in time of peace. He noted that in context of Poland: that to oppose the communism and fight it effectively, one had very specific mindset. Sniffing the enemy agents, conspiracies, be suspicious, not willing to make compromise etc. That were the great traits when you were in conspiracy - but later made awful politicians when communism was (somewhat) defeated. Most of the great leaders of so called "democratic opposition" went on to become leaders of infighting, low blows, unable to compromise over even tiny issues in order to defeat the recovering left. He proposed that leaders of the resistance should get state salaries, become cult objects and then put into solitary luxury mansions, with everyone trying very hard to make their lifes comfortable and as far from the current politics as it is possible.

I guess most of current leading figures of the alt-right, with VD, Milo and Molyneaux should get their million dollars when the right take over the institutions and win the culture fight.

Another thing, from my observation is that people fighting against all odds, who are constantly being called the worst names, either become broken and give up - or start to share also similar traits. Cejrowski was on of the few guys who influenced hundreds of thousands young Poles. I loved watching his programs. However, in his later age he became an unbearable, arrogant arsehole. There is something similar about few other "lone fighters". They raised the generation of rightwingers, but they lost something of their soul in the process, carrying the load in the times when no one was appreciating them. They seem to gain "f* you" attitude about everything they did. That's understandable; otherwise they wouldn't be able to do what they did. But still, for me they look like old, battle-hardened veterans with scars all over.

It's amazing that VD is able to still be able to be, at least sometimes, polite.
One thing that people consistently fail to understand about me versus my fellow "leading figures" for lack of a better word is that I have always been an athlete. Not only that, but I have excelled in both individual and team sports, and discovered that I vastly prefer team sports.

That is why I can work effectively with others, and why I completely refuse to even try to work with those I identify as being self-serving, attention-seeking, or simply incapable of playing well with others. As I often tell people, the best way to get to know a man's true character is to play with him on the soccer field. Every characteristic, from courage and determination to laziness and a desire to avoid responsibility, becomes readily apparent to his teammates. You just can't hide anything from them.

It's disappointing when those who have been assisted and supported by others affect to have become too important for them and attempt to move on, but then, they will learn their lesson soon enough as the support they need will not be there for them when opposition arises, as it always does. That is why it is always vital to never forget either your base or your allies, or to fail to protect their interests as assiduously as you look out for your own. The more the Right learns to do that, the more effective it will become.

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85 Comments:

Blogger Sterling Pilgrim January 04, 2018 11:16 AM  

Playing high school football was an extremely pivotal event in my life, having seen myself and my peers being pushed to relative physical and mental extremes. No one cared who was dating the hot chick or just struck out with an ugly chick when a strategy was successfully implemented on a Friday night in front of the home crowd. The kings of old had their close circles, their comitatus, and for good reason.

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother January 04, 2018 11:19 AM  

I'm sorry but we've been reliably informed many times in the pages of this blog that sports are inconsequential, much like the details of Dr. Evil's childhood.

Blogger Sterling Pilgrim January 04, 2018 11:23 AM  

Apology accepted

Anonymous Pony1 January 04, 2018 11:30 AM  

A lot of this could be applied to Bannon. I think even a little to Cerno as well. As we went from winning the election and back to the everyday grind of politics, I think Mike has recently become a little disenchanted with it all as well.

Vox has always had a long term view and does a good job of not getting too wrapped up in the daily wins and loses, which I admire. Well at the same time staying current and relevant.

The sort of humility that comes with knowing you are still part of an even larger plot probably helps with surviving all these changes as well and still finding a role to play. Whether it be a worldview grounded in Christianity or like Molyneux with his Philosophy.

Anonymous Hoppes #9 January 04, 2018 11:37 AM  

@ Pony1. Yes, the Christian grounding is key--humility rooted in the cross of Christ rather than the self-righteous religiosity sort.

Anonymous Looking Glass January 04, 2018 11:39 AM  

There's also the issue that anyone on the Right that's a "team builder" will be savagely attacked from the very beginning because everyone sees the danger to their own position. One could start quoting Sun Tzu at length here, but being a specter before you activate your strategies is really important.

The other aspect is that far too many of the "revolutionary" types are only thinking about Victory, but Victory is a singular event and you have to live the next day. In major wars, you always have people planning the post-War strategies while you're also still working to win the war. So, in many ways, what we're seeing is the "payment" of a century of propaganda to be short-sighted thinkers. (Granted, Trump is actually leveraging this to his advantage, but Trump is Trump.)

Blogger Anchorman January 04, 2018 11:42 AM  

Certainly seems to make sense when applied to Leftist revolutions. The leaders of the revolution tended to be pretty bad governors of the new state.

And then, of course, there's George Washington. Don't find too many of those types.

Blogger tuberman January 04, 2018 11:56 AM  

These are exactly the lessons some come to learn here and even harsher places. It's not about me, or you, or you, is so important. Started on this journey when realized that the West is so important to the world, and especially to the soul of the Christian West.

There are "doers" and work to be done, and "getting credit" is often a roadblock.

Anonymous krymneth January 04, 2018 11:58 AM  

Looking Glass wrote:The other aspect is that far too many of the "revolutionary" types are only thinking about Victory, but Victory is a singular event and you have to live the next day.

Applicable to "The Happening" and people's expectations around it, I'd say. A lot of The Happening's followers expect it to manifest as one big day in which everyone everywhere is arrested over the course of a couple of hours, and are always disappointed when the next promise of it doesn't pan out on schedule.

Me, I say it is Happening, just slower. When people alive today read the first draft histories of this time period, they'll be amazed at how much happened while at the same time it seemed like nothing was happening on a day-by-day basis.

(Also makes it easy for shills, or even honest disbelievers, to claim it's not a thing, because there isn't and won't be that One Big Day. But even just what has already happened has exceeded my wildest 2015 dreams, when I thought inexorable leftist ratcheting squeezing us to death was all but inevitable.)

Anonymous six pan January 04, 2018 12:00 PM  

As I often tell people, the best way to get to know a man's true character is to cook with him on the line of a busy restarant. Every characteristic, from courage and determination to laziness and a desire to avoid responsibility, becomes readily apparent to his teammates. You just can't hide anything from them.... Plus sharp knives, fire, and superheated metal everywhere; frenetic action racing against time in a crowded space; and unseen eyes and palates judging every plate that goes out.

Tried soccer. Got seriously put off by a father/coach- son/"star player" dynamic. C'est la vie.

Anonymous Looking Glass January 04, 2018 12:02 PM  

@8 tuberman

Yup, and notice how they love to create media that praises the single, loner holdout that is victorious over impossible odds, yet the cultural instinct is to teach boys to play team sports that require precise coordination. That coordination is what wins wars and builds a nation.

It points to an interesting pathway for the degradation of our societies. Part of the damage of the Equality perspective is that it runs male hierarchical approaches in with female Queen Bee approaches. For Men, the team wins; for Women, she wins.

And I just made a random argument for co-ed schools being evil.

Blogger J Van Stry January 04, 2018 12:09 PM  

It's like when the lead singer of a band 'goes solo' and then falls flat. He needed the rest of the band to get where he was, but his ego was too big to see it.

Blogger tuberman January 04, 2018 12:11 PM  

Played plenty of sandlot team sports, then organized team sports failed me when I tried team baseball, and it was rigged. In spite of being a decent player, I received zero plying time in Little League...because no dad support, and if no family pressuring the organization, no chance to even get a look. Took up semi-team stuff such as MA with three friends later, also worked out weights with same three friends, and mentored by people of my choice instead of usual coaches. Results were great.

Anonymous SAK January 04, 2018 12:13 PM  

the best way to get to know a man's true character is to play with him on the soccer field

Yes!

From the ball hogging narcisst through to the dedicated team man who always works hard to get back into position when an attack breaks down, and all else besides, everything is revealed.

Blogger tuberman January 04, 2018 12:14 PM  

Sometimes you have to look around to find your own teams.

Anonymous Jack Amok January 04, 2018 12:15 PM  

Agrippa didn't come along until after Brutus and Mark Antony.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan January 04, 2018 12:18 PM  

Slightly ot, if any of you are members of Max Velocity's forum and have not been there for awhile check out the Combat and Fear thread and watch the video from the combatives instructor giving a talk at West Point.

He talks from social ostracization, overcoming the negatives to forming a positive culture in the unit.

And the Right is these days the victim of social ostracizing and it does nothing to combat it or create a counter, because we allow literal lunatics to make up shit like isms, ists and phobias and then spend time policing our own for the left.

Think of a combat unit that comes under fire and its leaders then pull their sidearms and start shooting their own soldiers, that is the Right these days.

Anonymous a_peraspera January 04, 2018 12:19 PM  

OT: The Clintons set a fire and burned down their own house in Chappaqua. What sort of evidence could they be destroying hmmm...?

Anonymous DaveInjustice January 04, 2018 12:22 PM  

It's disappointing when those who have been assisted and supported by others affect to have become too important for them and attempt to move on"

I watched a documentary featuring interviews with David Beckham and his contemporaries at Man United and I was struck how he still didn't effect any attitude of superiority, despite having achieved mega stardom. Even his teammates remarked how he stayed the same guy he always was, and also about his work ethic and how despite having the talent he didn't want to waste the tiniest bit of potential.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan January 04, 2018 12:26 PM  

If team activities are germane to this thread may I mention to you gun types who have a house full of guns and like to talk about guns, toughly, may I suggest you stow the ego for a few days and take a class with the fine men at Max Velocity Tactical. From the handling of weapons competently to working with another person to team movement this is the professionally run outfit you were looking for.

Blogger stevev January 04, 2018 12:26 PM  

I'm 59 years old and never, outside of 5th grade soccer in merry old England, have I played team sports. I was too young to realize what Vox so eloquently points out.
It actually hurt to realize I passed up the opportunity to know my self. (Although I'm sure I would have come up short, retrospectively.)

Blogger Rough Carrigan January 04, 2018 12:29 PM  

There's a narration voiceover line in the movie Barry Lyndon to the effect that the very traits that enabled Barry to acquire a fortune made it impossible for him to keep it.

Blogger Wynn Lloyd January 04, 2018 12:31 PM  

This post made me sad. I really hate that I had to miss out on sports. I had music, but I was way too much of a late bloomer to play sports in high school.

It's very awkward when a quarter of the people I meet ask me if I ever played basketball (I'm 6'10''), and I have to tell them no, that I never played any sports in high school. By the time I finished puberty I was in undergrad and didn't have years of practice to draw on. Plus I developed a meek personality to counter potential fear of me.


The athletic upbringing must be the reason why VD can withstand so much venom from the enemy. I guess you really can't be a true "leader of men" if you've never been an athlete.

Blogger Nate73 January 04, 2018 12:32 PM  

I've never played team sports outside of recess when I was in 8th grade. But I play a lot of online team games. I feel like a lot of my formerly liberal attitudes and even general sociosexuality were affected by that, although basically being raised in diversityville(TM) didn't real help either with forming attachments. Basically I see myself as a lone wolf, and teamwork as just a distraction. Part of that though is my gammaish tendency to try to boss the team around as if I know what's best. Which is often not the case.

Yet I feel sometimes like something is missing, like I would benefit a lot from playing actual team sports. Kind of afraid though because of weak knees though and being 30. The question I ask myself is would it be worth it at this point to even bother, what would I get out of it?

Blogger OGRE January 04, 2018 12:36 PM  

six pan wrote:As I often tell people, the best way to get to know a man's true character is to cook with him on the line of a busy restarant.

I'd strongly agree. There are massive similarities between line cooking and team sports, but in my experience working the line will show a man's character much quicker. Within a week you'll have a very good idea of what kind of man you're dealing with. You'll also pick up on a lot of his habits and traits much sooner as well; not just quality of character but issues of work ethic, organization, mental traits, etc.

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother January 04, 2018 12:37 PM  

If you passed up sports in your youth for any reason, make sure your son's don't. Get them into sports and then watch. Don't be the crazy dad.

Blogger Wynn Lloyd January 04, 2018 12:40 PM  

Good advice.

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother January 04, 2018 12:46 PM  

My boys have played soccer, basketball starts this month, and we'll keep chewing through youth sports until they find something they really like. Football is off the table, but anything else is doable.

Blogger tuberman January 04, 2018 12:46 PM  

Thinking about it, a good portion of the people here, had to grow up, not so much hiding their intelligence and/or intensity, as they partition their personality to who they are around. One can deal with people in several modes, without being schizo at all. Communication can be a test to see if the other is worth dealing with, and on what level. This is not an ego thing, it is a survival thing, and even a playful thing. At an early age I identified as an Otter, my personal totem.

Anonymous Stephen J. January 04, 2018 12:51 PM  

I have always been an athlete. Not only that, but I have excelled in both individual and team sports, and discovered that I vastly prefer team sports.

Out of curiosity, were there particular experiences that you can point to as having helped you avoid what I see as the great social trap of those who do well in athletics and sports -- i.e., the temptation to rest on the laurels of those accomplishments, and treat the subsequent accolades as all that was needed for fulfillment? Or would you say you have just always been the sort of person who needed to keep your mind and creative interests as exercised as your physical skills?

Anonymous patrick kelly January 04, 2018 12:53 PM  

"Got seriously put off by a father/coach- son/"star player" dynamic."

Yeah, cuz' nepotism only happens in team sports.

Blogger Aeoli January 04, 2018 12:55 PM  

When only four of your players show up the roles get awfully interchangeable.

Blogger tuberman January 04, 2018 12:55 PM  

Stg58/Animal Mother wrote:If you passed up sports in your youth for any reason, make sure your son's don't. Get them into sports and then watch. Don't be the crazy dad.

Yep, the test here is to not live through the ones you mentor or help. Forget vicarious living, never do it.


Not about you is simple.

Blogger VD January 04, 2018 12:55 PM  

Yet I feel sometimes like something is missing, like I would benefit a lot from playing actual team sports. Kind of afraid though because of weak knees though and being 30. The question I ask myself is would it be worth it at this point to even bother, what would I get out of it?

I joined my current team in my 40s, three years after being convinced I was done due to a lingering injury. You could have 20 years of playing in front of you. Even just being a practice player is well worth the time spent; I was just a practice player for a 3rd League team that won promotion and the experience was great and lifted me to the absolute peak of my abilities.

Anonymous patrick kelly January 04, 2018 12:57 PM  

" What sort of evidence could they be destroying hmmm...?"

Hope we're amazed by the evidence found in an arson investigation.

Blogger pyrrhus January 04, 2018 12:58 PM  

VD, don't you think your faith has something to do with your more benign attitude towards other people and the fight?
I know that mine does...

Blogger VD January 04, 2018 1:00 PM  

The athletic upbringing must be the reason why VD can withstand so much venom from the enemy.

Imagine how much trash-talking you receive in the 100-meter dash when you're not black. I never talked back or got upset. I just smiled, shook hands, wished them good luck, and blew them all away. That was how my predecessor, the state champion, always did it. Seemed to work for him, so I followed his example.

Blogger VD January 04, 2018 1:02 PM  

VD, don't you think your faith has something to do with your more benign attitude towards other people and the fight?

Perhaps. But it's more that I naturally assume MPAI. And even those who aren't actual idiots will behave like idiots from time to time, for one reason or another. It's hard to get too worked up when people behave as you generally expect them to behave.

Anonymous patrick kelly January 04, 2018 1:02 PM  

Didn't do team sports after jr. high, too small and not good enough to make up for it. Was an ok wrestler.

Tried to mentor my children in team sports, but since I wasn't playing as an adult they followed my other techy, geeky interests instead. Nothing wrong with them, but I think more team sports would have helped them develop more balanced lives.

Anonymous Causal Lurker January 04, 2018 1:03 PM  

This is slightly off the wall, but is the reason why we need to read or study the classics. Szopen's observation sounds very much like the contrast in the Iliad and Odyssey among Achilles, Agamemnon, and Odysseus. Only one returned home to live anything close to a normal life after the Trojan War, and that was after a long journey and multiple perils to body and soul. Thanks, szopen, this is something to think and reflect on.

I ask college students which they identify with better, Achilles or Odysseus? More are answering Odysseus, which is interesting.

Anonymous trev006 January 04, 2018 1:10 PM  

You can have courage and determination- you also need raw talent. Some people need to search for that talent over years. Some might never have it in athletics. Too fat and too weak.

But the corollary is also true: that with even a minor bit of talent and courage, you can transform yourself. No matter what you think of Roosh, that guy has brass balls. I wonder if mustering the courage to pick up girls helped build the courage to face down shrieking SJWs? Same thing for Milo. If a flamboyant gay man can do it, what's your excuse?

If conflict transforms heroes into misanthropes, certainly conflict can work the other way too.

Anonymous Steve Canyon January 04, 2018 1:10 PM  

It's never too late to play a team sport. There's plenty of options out there. I was a late bloomer in high school. There's no way I would have made the baseball team with my lack of size and speed. I still loved the game and played on a couple of softball teams. It might not have been the same as a team where the games count for something more than a couple of attaboys or a rec-league t-shirt at season's end, but you still get some of the same lessons.

I still play. I get exercise out of it. Sometimes you can network with others and pick up some career prospects or get solutions to problems. Never happened to me, but I've seen a couple people start dating from it. One was a guy and a gal that both played on a team, another was a guy who met a friend of another player. Who knows, if you're decent enough you might get a bit of a contextual alpha bump that attracts attention. If not, well, no one is going to get called up to the Majors from a beer league so who cares if you make a mistake? Brush it off and do better the next time.

Most YMCA's have rec leagues of one form or another. And a lot of cities have a Parks/Rec dept that has leagues too. Some of them even have them broken down by skill, where the "pros" are in one league and the novices in another.

Don't like softball? Find a site like meetup.com and see what your area offers that's interesting. Just looking on that site in my area shows flag football, basketball, and volleyball. Undoubtedly there's others.

Blogger RobertT January 04, 2018 1:11 PM  

Author clumsy use of commas.
This could describe Lech Walesa, Patton, MacArthur, but not George Washington, or Eisenhower. Or it could just be because over time busy people become less interested in wasting time on incompetence. That's called wisdom.

Blogger Ariadne Umbrella January 04, 2018 1:14 PM  

Animal Mother, why not football? You've mentioned being in Texas. Isn't that the state religion?

Blogger Ariadne Umbrella January 04, 2018 1:14 PM  

Animal Mother, why not football? You've mentioned being in Texas. Isn't that the state religion?

Anonymous BBGKB January 04, 2018 1:15 PM  

The team sport you play matters, as it is part of the "don't trust anyone who has not been punched in the face

http://takimag.com/article/never_trust_anyone_who_hasnt_been_punched_in_the_face/print

Blogger szopen January 04, 2018 1:16 PM  

Causal Lurker wrote:Szopen's observation

The thing about great fighter not being great leader in normal life actually is not mine observation - I've just passed the comment by known Polish political commenter, former sf writer, Ziemkiewicz.

As for the classical education - yeah. It's amazing how relevant today some of those things seem today.

Blogger Keef January 04, 2018 1:22 PM  

One thing that people consistently fail to understand about me versus my fellow "leading figures" for lack of a better word is that I have always been an athlete. Not only that, but I have excelled in both individual and team sports, and discovered that I vastly prefer team sports.

Fantastic point Vox!

I’ve played both individual and team sports and love both for different reasons.

Playing competitive golf was awesome because you literally have nobody else to credit for your successes other than yourself, but the flip side being that bad shots are your own fault.

Having the immediate feedback of good shots vs. bad ones on the course is something I’ve always enjoyed.

That said, a good team, where the collective value is greater than the sum of individual parts is also super fun to be a part of!

Anonymous Napoleon 12pdr January 04, 2018 1:22 PM  

I think Szopen might be onto something.

Revolutionaries tend to be zealots. It goes with the territory. But zealots often have a hard time dealing with success - John McCain's Presidential campaign being a case in point. If you are your party's nominee, you are NOT "The Maverick". You must transition from being "the Resistance" to being "the Establishment". Zealots have a hard time with this.

It helps a lot if the revolutionaries have exposure to positions that demand cooperation. As an example, most of the members of the 2nd Continental Congress were colonial legislators. They may have been revolutionaries, but they were revolutionaries that knew how to be on top, as well as on the bottom.

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother January 04, 2018 1:24 PM  

Ariadne,

CTE

Blogger szopen January 04, 2018 1:33 PM  

RobertT wrote:Author clumsy use of commas.


Sorry - I am not native speaker and I often apply the rules of my native language, where commas are default before "who, that, whose, where" etc. Usually I spot the errors only after I post the comment.

What's worse, quite often I realise that I forgot to write some word or even whole sentence. I really wish for comment edit feature, in the way it's implemented at unz.com for example.

As for the Wałęsa, the funny thing it's now 9%% sure he was initially communist agent. Some point on the way he decided he would get better by betraying his masters and starting a real resistance. Again, Ziemkiewicz have written taht there could be no other way: real hero would be killed, tortured, disappeared. Only someone who communist thought they could control could "trick" them (Wałęsa said "I tricked them" on at least one occasion, while creating a storm of denials mixed with excuses and half-admissions of his agentural past). Wałęsa, a simple cunning uneducated guy, was perfect for destruction of communism, though it would be probably better, if he would later admit he was for some time an agent. Without his admission, we will forever have doubts whether his later decisions (of which some are quite controversial) were not influenced by blackmails of his former masters.

Blogger RobertDWood January 04, 2018 1:36 PM  

The example of Daniel O'Connor, the liberator, would belie this theory. He was wealthy and comfortable and still became a arsehole who destroyed thr freedom cause of young ireland in his old age

Blogger szopen January 04, 2018 1:41 PM  

hehe, yeah, that's what I meant for "I wish there would be edit feature" : s/sure/certain, no comma before "where", s/taht/that, no comma before "while", "we will forever" ...

Maybe I should start to always wait few second before hitting "publish" and first reread the comment.

Blogger Wynn Lloyd January 04, 2018 1:41 PM  

Sounds like a great example to model. . I will try to muster up the confidence to do just that next time I'm attacked for my views. A thick skin seems to be a must for anyone standing against the left in an effective way.
I bet that experience, of being put down so savagely, then crushing your opponents, earns a man extreme self- confidence.

Blogger Nate January 04, 2018 2:05 PM  

This is why the Sports-Ball crowd is so totally wrong. There are so many life lessons that come from playing sports that not doing so is a virtual handicap.

Anonymous patrick kelly January 04, 2018 2:11 PM  

"You've mentioned being in Texas. Isn't that the state religion?"

Heh, we have a public football system with incidental education taking place.

Blogger VD January 04, 2018 2:21 PM  

Maybe I should start to always wait few second before hitting "publish" and first reread the comment.

No, it's so much more effective to emote copiously onto the screen, hit publish without hesitation, then re-read your published comments several times, note all the errors, then express surprise, irritation, and anger that Google still hasn't added an edit function in 18 years.

Repeat ad infinitum.

Anonymous Michael Maier January 04, 2018 2:36 PM  

I never talked back or got upset. I just smiled, shook hands, wished them good luck, and blew them all away.

And shared bananas on occasion.

Blogger szopen January 04, 2018 2:40 PM  

No, it's so much more effective to emote copiously onto the screen, hit publish without hesitation, then re-read your published comments several times, note all the errors, then express surprise, irritation, and anger that Google still hasn't added an edit function in 18 years.
You are absolutely right, VD.

It's just old habits die hard. I am here, however, irritated and angry by my own silliness rather than by the blogs' features.

Seriously though, I will try to get better. I already am removing my own comments when I realise (when) they are stupid, might be irritating to other or I should just shut up. It's just easier to say "i'll get better" than actually "become better".

Blogger Nate January 04, 2018 2:53 PM  

dude.. its ok. I have spent years here vaccinating these folks against negative reactions to creative spelling... flatly treasonous grammar... and other little things like omitting various words entirely.

Blogger Josh (the sexiest thing here) January 04, 2018 3:00 PM  

dude.. its ok. I have spent years here vaccinating these folks against negative reactions to creative spelling... flatly treasonous grammar... and other little things like omitting various words entirely.

Thank u 4 ur service

Blogger Guitar Man January 04, 2018 3:12 PM  

@Josh *you're

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother January 04, 2018 3:13 PM  

IT'S UR

Blogger Josh (the sexiest thing here) January 04, 2018 3:13 PM  

@guitarmam don't pc police me. All about telling not spelling. If you can't Handel that theres the door.

Blogger Guitar Man January 04, 2018 3:17 PM  

How can PFTC be real if his name isn't real. Makes you think.

Blogger Ariadne Umbrella January 04, 2018 3:29 PM  

thank you.
that sounds horrifying.

Blogger VFM #7634 January 04, 2018 3:32 PM  

"As I often tell people, the best way to get to know a man's true character is to play with him on the soccer field."

FWIW, as a kid, I stunk as a forward but was a very effective fullback. Naturally, fullback became my favorite position. Especially since I was usually on one of the weakest teams in the league.

Sort of a metaphor for my life in general: don't work too well with others, but am still fully dedicated to helping the team however I can.

Blogger DonReynolds January 04, 2018 4:06 PM  

People who are close to the fire and in the room when decisions are being made are forward-facing, always preparing for the next contest, the next big deal, and the dust clouds they see on the horizon.

The news reporters are slow to get the story, the announcement, the groundbreaking event, the ribbon cutting....but that is what THEY want to talk about and ask questions regarding. That is what goes into the newspaper and on the television, the crap that was decided months ago (or even years). They are constantly rear-facing, trying to write a history, but never taking an interest in what is going to happen NEXT or AFTER or what plans follow on top of these or what decisions have been preserved for later.

The good news is....the knuckleheads in the media do not get to do any drum roll or log thumping about decisions that have yet to be made. They have zero influence. All they can do is cluck their tongues later, point and sputter.

The bad news is....the voters and taxpaying public also have zero influence on decisions or what is considered important elements in making those decisions. They would like to be involved and informed, but they are not included until they hear about it from the rear-facing media.

OpenID leukosfash January 04, 2018 4:07 PM  

@Josh *dore

Blogger Nate January 04, 2018 4:13 PM  

also soccer is still gay.

Blogger J Curtis January 04, 2018 4:18 PM  

My father passed on when I was quite young and when I made it to high school, I joined the football team. GAWD was it a learning experience. Developed character I never knew I had. The coaching staff was comprised of numerous 2nd and 3rd generation Italian Americans, every one of them screechy, demanding and hyper critical. Congratulatory affirmation was rare but you remembered it when you got it.
I recall the head coach once heatedly telling us that one day we would be out in the real world and sometimes you have to suck it up in and power through in the job world, no matter how much you want to tell the boss of your crappy job to take a hike. It kept me in gainful employment more than once in my misspent younger years when in hindsight it would have been dumb for me to quit at the time without another job prospect.

Not a day goes by when I don't think of those experiences, boy am I thankful for them.

Blogger DonReynolds January 04, 2018 4:47 PM  

One of my more unusual assignments was working as assistant to the O&M Manager at a nuclear power plant during a refueling cycle (1990-91). He was retired Navy, like so many others in the nuclear industry, but he did not come from the submarine service...he served on destroyers. He was a little more harsh and personal when dealing with middle managers than they were accustomed. He was noisy and liked the chewing out part to be loud and abusive. They usually left his office with their tail bitten completely off. Yes, Dan was a tall scary man.

(One day a group of managers asked me why he yelled at them so much, so I told them.....because he cares very much about this power plant and you as managers. Too few of them had football experience, so it was their first time to be under real pressure.)

One day, Dan the Man found an oily rag on the floor of the containment building and he had every manager standing in a line and demanded to know from each one of them why this "trash" was on the floor of the containment building. I walked in a bit later, walked up and took the oily rag from his hand. He looked at me, like I had lost my mind and then I told him....

"This is not trash, it is a tool. Some workman is probably looking for it right now. I will take it to Lost & Found."

Dan smiled and walked out of the room, leaving the managers standing at attention. Slowly they relaxed and wandered out of the room, somewhat unsure of what to do next.

General Electric took out a two-page spread in the industry trade magazine to congratulate Brunswick Nuclear for setting the new World Speed Record for refueling a BWR (boiling water reactor). For us it was like winning the SuperBowl.

Blogger allyn71 January 04, 2018 5:30 PM  

also soccer is still gay.

Gay with a side of gay covered in gay sauce.

Anonymous E Deploribus Unum January 04, 2018 5:31 PM  

dude.. its ok. I have spent years here vaccinating these folks against negative reactions to creative spelling... flatly treasonous grammar... and other little things like omitting various words entirely.

Not to mention your complete lack of interest in the use of capital letters ...

Anonymous Mr. Rational January 04, 2018 5:43 PM  

@54

sarchasm n.  The gap between the maker of a barbed remark and the intended target who doesn't get it.

@60 I've got a little Liszt, I've got a little Liszt...

@68 Great story.  Note that in the middle of this bitter cold snap, the USA's nuclear fleet is running at 100.0% save for 5 plants, and none of them under 93%.

Anonymous Ben Dover January 04, 2018 6:18 PM  

How cute. You think Soccer is a sport.

Blogger great_o'rety January 04, 2018 7:38 PM  

Causal Lurker wrote:This is slightly off the wall, but is the reason why we need to read or study the classics. Szopen's observation sounds very much like the contrast in the Iliad and Odyssey among Achilles, Agamemnon, and Odysseus. Only one returned home to live anything close to a normal life after the Trojan War, and that was after a long journey and multiple perils to body and soul. Thanks, szopen, this is something to think and reflect on.

I ask college students which they identify with better, Achilles or Odysseus? More are answering Odysseus, which is interesting.


Ye olde myths, right? I remember to this day how dumbstruck I was when I first read about Odysseus and Sirens being a tale about the deadly dangers of being acquainted with my dear friend, procrastination.

Blogger Gordon Scott January 04, 2018 8:49 PM  

Even here in the frozen north there are team sports in the winter. At the gyms, clubs and YMCAs they have basketball. There are adult hockey teams. There are adult broomball leagues. In the summer some of the bars have softball and volleyball. Does your company have a softball team (or kittenball, if you want the gals and guys)? If not, organize one, and ask your boss to write the sponsor check. It doesn't matter if you can play--you're just the guy who gets there first with the equipment. Let someone else do the lineup for you.

Coed softball can be interesting. I had one gal who could pound out the flies to deep left; maybe one in 10 cleared the fence. I had another who was such a good pitcher that, combined with a smart catcher (me) could strike people out (in slowpitch!) or get the long ball hitters to pop up to the infield. She pitched a one-hitter, once.

You learn a lot about people managing a team.

Blogger Lazarus January 04, 2018 10:28 PM  

The only place diversity actually seems to work is in team sports. This might have been what has confused the elites into thinking it works in society.

Because MEAI.

Blogger The Overgrown Hobbit January 04, 2018 11:38 PM  

@33 Even at 55 it's not too late to take up a sport.

If you have children, consider karate, or better yet judo, and find a dojo that offers multi age programs. In martial arts, especially, the mental game and the self-discipline involved (at least at the beginning stages) trumps youth and strength and flexibility. You can set a fantastic example for your children, even as you are learning and getting involved in a great sport.

As minikami sensei said "if the body fails: No shame. If the will fails: shame."

Blogger Snidely Whiplash January 05, 2018 12:10 AM  

kittenball, if you want the gals and guys

Visions of hitting a kitten for a line-drive double pop into my head.

"I've got it, I've got it... Ewwwwwww. Ugh. There's no way to throw this damn thing."

Anonymous Steve Jobs' Corpse January 05, 2018 4:09 AM  

Pure nonsense. All groups are self-selecting, but athletes are a subset of self-selecting groups that prioritize athleticism over team-building catechisms. Good intentions rank somewhere below rape statistics, so long as you're good at sportsball du jour.

There is no magical incantation that can make a great leader. If there were, you can bet the military already knows it, and they're not recruiting en masse from recreational soccer leagues.

One aspect that is shared among great leaders is a light dusting of sociopathy. You're not going to change the world because you're a team player. You change the world because you think the everybody else is beneath you.

Blogger szopen January 05, 2018 4:18 AM  

Mr. Rational wrote:@54

sarchasm n.  The gap between the maker of a barbed remark and the intended target who doesn't get it.

Mmm that made me thinking - I am not a native speaker, so does that mean that my apology hadn't sounded as one and instead sounded as if had not got VD's sarcasm?!

Anonymous GodEmperorMemes January 05, 2018 5:54 AM  

Gayer than AIDS

Blogger Snidely Whiplash January 05, 2018 2:35 PM  

Steve Jobs' Corpse wrote:One aspect that is shared among great leaders is a light dusting of sociopathy. You're not going to change the world because you're a team player. You change the world because you think the everybody else is beneath you.

Why is "changing the world" the measure of greatness for you? Smells like a category error to me.

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